St. Louis Cardinals: Michael Wacha not close to returning

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PHILADELPHIA, PA - JUNE 20: Starting pitcher Michael Wacha #52 of the St. Louis Cardinals delivers a pitch in the second inning during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on June 20, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JUNE 20: Starting pitcher Michael Wacha #52 of the St. Louis Cardinals delivers a pitch in the second inning during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on June 20, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images) /
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This is not the news of the week for the St. Louis Cardinals, but it is still relevant. Michael Wacha is not that close to returning.

According to Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, once Michael Wacha begins his throwing program, it will be three weeks before he starts his rehab. The St. Louis Cardinals starter likely will not be back until mid-August after straining his left oblique.

Wacha left on the bottom of the fourth inning during his start on June 20th with the injury. In Hummel’s article, he said the injured pitcher recently got an ultrasound with good results. But that does not mean things are close.

The Road To Recovery

Until Wacha starts his throwing program, there is no clock for his return. When that program starts, the ticking of the clock begins as well. By the estimation in Hummel’s article, it is a three week program, then three or four rehab starts.

The recovery means a lot to the St. Louis Cardinals starting rotation. There is enough young guns to cover the difference, but nothing says more about the struggle than the teams depth chart on MLB.com. If you click on that link, you will see that they have the Redbirds sporting a three man rotation.

Wacha’s Numbers

Prior to injury, Wacha was sporting an 8-2 record with a 3.20 ERA. He was having a great year, so it will be good to get him back. His xFIP is just over four, but he still will add something to the rotation.

Other Injury News

The other pitcher on the mend is Adam Wainwright. His timetable is to start his rehab in mid-August. So, mend, might be an advanced term. But there has been a longstanding question of how he will return from injury. I speculated as a reliever, but that might not be the case. It is likely he will be a starter upon return.

Next: Mike Matheny FIRED

It will be good to have starting pitchers who won’t be travelling to meet up with Memphis after they start. That kind of steady presence would be nice to have. Especially considering the shakeup in the coaching staff.

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